A college student from Texas who was traveling the globe as part of a whirlwind study abroad program died on Tuesday in Myanmar after falling from the top of a temple while trying to get a good view of the sunset.
20-year-old Kassandra Braun was a junior studying communication at St. Edward’s University in Austin when she opted to join the Semester At Sea program, a globetrotting four-month course that takes students to ten different countries around the world and offers a semester’s worth of college credits.
The students were wrapping up a five-day stay in Bagan, Myanmar, when the program took them to the region’s famous pagodas. According to local reports, Braun was trying to look for the sunset atop one of the pagodas when she plummeted the ground and was severely injured. She succumbed to her injuries while in an ambulance on the way to Mandalay General Hospital.
“The family as absolutely devastated by the tragic death of their daughter and sister, Kassandra ‘Kassie’ Braun. They are still waiting for further details about what happened but would like everyone to know that Kassie was having the time of her life on Semester at Sea and was living her dream,” her parents wrote in a statement.
“She was so full of life and love, gave so much to so many. She had a tremendous love for her friends and teachers at Cathedral High School and St. Edward’s University. She lived the Holy Cross way hoping to someday give back as was given to her.”
Braun, who was originally from McCordsville, Indiana, was also remembered in a St. Edward’s University Campus Ministry Facebook post, which noted that her brother Kavan also attends the university as a freshman.
“We encourage everyone in our community to band together in support of one another and ask that you keep Kassie and her family in your thoughts and prayers,” the post reads.